As the princess of a small, European country, Marlena of Hartzcoburg goes on an American tour to save her homeland from bankruptcy. Forced to head West after the Stock Market Crash of 1889, Marlena takes ill. While she is recuperating, her resourceful major domo finds a look-alike to take over Marlena's duties. All would be well if not for Roberta Ann's scandalous past.

Texas Ranger Virgil Black is on the trail of the ginger-haired, emerald-eyed thief and he's sure he's captured the culprit when he sees Marlena. This case of mistaken identity leads them on a wild ride. Marlena tries to convince Virgil that she's a princess, but he's convinced she's nothing but a beautiful liar. Marlena learns to survive on the trail. Leaving her spoiled, headstrong and pampered ways is a difficult task, but falling in love with her captor is easy. Virgil finds himself captivated by the "Princess". Pretending to be man and wife is hard enough, without truly wanting her as his own.

Their relationship heats up like the desert under a hot sun, sizzling all night long. Their longing gives way to heated loving. But just what will happen when the truth wins out and Marlena has to go back to becoming a princess again?

A lively plot, surprises and plenty of simmering sensuality and action keep the pages moving like wild fire in Nan Ryan's latest humorous and touching western. A truly enjoyable and deliciously satisfying romance chock full of the joy and magic of love as well as humor and tenderness. Who could ask for more? SENSUAL (July, 400 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin